During the week of September 26-29, the Boston College Church in the 21st Century Center, in partnership with Campus Ministry, will launch its annual Espresso Your Faith Week. Described as “a week for the Boston College community to express their faith in a variety of forums,” Espresso Your Faith Week 2016 consists of over 25 activities throughout campus.
Espresso Your Faith Week is a derivative of the popular Agape Latte program, which started at Boston College in 2006. Agape Latte is “a monthly event designed for students seeking to learn more about faith and religion in an inviting social environment.” At 8:30pm on the first Tuesday of every month, hundreds of students pile into Hillside Cafe—fire code capacity is usually met within minutes. They are then treated to free desserts, coffee, and an engaging discussion by a well-known Boston College faculty or staff member.
The word agape, a Greek word for a kind of love that seeks nothing in return, captures the intention behind the speaker series: to spark conversation about the meaning of love and spirituality amongst students. Speakers’ talks center around the, “intersection of faith and life,” and usually feature stories of adversity, struggle, and even regret.
About five years ago, students told Karen Kiefer, Associate Director of the Church in the 21st Century Center, they wanted even more Agape Latte nights. However, after brainstorming with Kiefer, they had an even better idea—a week-long celebration of students’ faith across campus. Thus, the first Espresso Your Faith Week was born.
This year’s celebration has a wide variety of activities— even a few brand new events. On Monday night, performance painter Mike Debus will create artwork live onstage in Gasson 100. Debus, who travels around the country to perform, will also describe how his faith life plays a role in the artwork he creates. Other newly featured events during the week include the new “Agape Lunch Series,” in which a Boston College faculty and staff member will eat lunch with a group of 35 students each day to discuss faith and life. This year’s lunches feature CSOM professor Tom Wesner, BC News & Public Affairs Director Jack Dunn, and Perspectives professor Kerry Cronin.
However, the most anticipated event of the week is Thursday night’s “Beanpot” in Robsham Theater—a mega-sized Agape Latte. This year, actor Chris O’Donnell will be the keynote speaker. O’Donnell who graduated from Boston College in 1992 with a degree in marketing, made his Hollywood debut in 1990. He has appeared in 34 different productions, most notably as Robin in the Batman movie franchise, and G. Callen in the popular CBS television series NCIS: LA. Fans of Grey’s Anatomy will remember O’Donnell as veterinarian Dr. Finn Dandridge, a past love interest of Dr. Meredith Grey.
Doors open in Robsham on Thursday night at 6:30pm. A calendar of the rest of the events for Espresso Your Faith Week can be found via the Agape Latte social media pages; interested students should visit facebook.com/AgapeLatte.